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How to insure your summer fun

From cottage getaways to rental cars, here's the coverage you need.

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Jordan Lavin

As the temperature rises, many Canadians are excited to spend their summer days participating in fun outdoor activities. From road trips to cottage getaways, the summer season provides an opportunity for adventure and relaxation. 

However, unexpected events can happen, and it's important to ensure that you and your belongings are protected. Whatever type of summer fun you’re planning, here’s how to insure it.


How to insure your summer vacation

Whether you're planning a road trip or heading overseas, travel insurance can provide peace of mind while you're away from home. Travel insurance typically covers medical expenses, trip cancellation or interruption, lost or stolen luggage, and emergency transportation.

The best way to insure a vacation is by using a travel rewards credit card to book your trip. The best travel credit cards in Canada include insurance coverage that protects you and your companions as long as you pay for the travel using the card. 

For travel that’s not easily booked with a credit card, like a road trip, you can buy coverage online. This is especially important if you’ll be visiting the United States, where a single trip to the hospital can cost tens of thousands of dollars.

If you’re planning a summer trip get a free travel insurance quote here.

How to insure your rental car

If you’re planning to rent a car, there are two types of insurance you’ll want to consider.

Firstly, you’ll need to make sure you’re covered for damage to the rental car in case it’s involved in a collision. Most rental car companies offer this coverage at a price ranging from $10 to $40 per day depending on the location and type of car you rent.

To save yourself this expense, reserve and pay for your rental car using a credit card that offers rental car insurance coverage. Most cards with an annual fee include rental car damage insurance but be sure to double check whether you’re covered before heading out.

Secondly, you’ll want to make sure you have insurance that will pay for third-party claims and your own expenses if you’re involved in a crash. This coverage usually costs less than $10 per day if you buy it from the rental car company.

If you have insurance for a car you own, your policy may extend to rental cars if you have an endorsement for liability to non-owned automobiles. Check your policy or ask your insurance broker whether you have coverage for rental cars. If not, the cost to add it is usually less than $50 per year.

Compare car insurance quotes from Canada's top providers.

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How to insure your motorcycle

If you're planning to hit the open road on a motorcycle, it's important to have the right insurance coverage. Motorcycle insurance typically includes liability coverage, which is required by law in most provinces, as well as coverage for theft, collision, and other damage.

Even though you only use your motorcycle when the weather is fair, it’s best to get a year-round motorcycle insurance policy. The rates are typically based on seasonal use, and provide protection against fire, theft and vandalism when your baby is tucked in for the winter. You can easily discuss and compare motorcycle insurance quotes with our brokerage RH Insurance to get the best deal on the coverage you need.

How to insure your cottage or cabin

Many Canadian summer homes are handed down from generation to generation, creating lasting memories for entire families. If your retreat were to be destroyed by fire or damaged by a falling tree, however, there’s a good chance your family wouldn’t be able to afford the cost to rebuild. 

Even if your cottage has stood safely for decades without insurance, climate change is creating risks that weren’t there even a few years ago. According to the University of Western Ontario’s Northern Tornadoes Project (NTP), Canada set a record for tornadoes in 2021 with 117 confirmed touchdowns and then tied that record with another 117 in 2022. Flooding, meanwhile, has increased by 300% since the 1960s and is the most frequent natural disaster in Canada.

When purchasing cottage insurance, compare insurance quotes online and consider the specific risks that your property may face. Factors such as the location of your cottage, the age and condition of the building, quality of roads and fire department access can all affect your premiums. Many cottage insurance policies can also extend to your most expensive toys, like ATVs and boats.

How to insure your vacation home for short-term rental use

If you're renting out your cottage or other property on a short-term basis, you’ll need insurance that covers damages caused by guests, as well as liability coverage for injuries that occur on your property.

With short-term rentals becoming a more common way for cottage owners to pay for their properties, many cottage insurance policies now provide optional coverage for a limited number of rentals – typically between 30 and 180 days per year. If rentals aren’t specified in your policy, however, it likely won’t provide any coverage at all if the property is used for rentals. Check with your insurance broker to make sure you have the short-term rental insurance coverage you need before you post your listing on Airbnb.

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How to insure your recreational vehicles

Finally, if you plan to spend your summer exploring the great outdoors in a recreational vehicle, such as a motorhome, trailer, boat, or ATV, it's important to have the right insurance coverage. Recreational vehicle insurance typically covers liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage, as well as coverage for theft and damage.

If you have some other kind of insurance coverage, you may be able to bundle your toys with it. For example, you may be able to insure your boat as part of your cottage insurance policy. Otherwise, there are many providers that offer trailer insurance, boat insurance and ATV insurance.

Keep in mind that most insurance policies explicitly prohibit operating a recreational vehicle while impaired by alcohol, cannabis, or other drugs. Play safely to avoid hurting yourself and having your claim denied.

The bottom line

Summer is a time for fun and adventure, but unexpected events can happen. Compare insurance quotes online and get the coverage you need for your summer fun so you can enjoy the sunshine stress-free.

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